ABOUT Kai Rivers

2017

Kai Rivers

Hometown:
Franklin, Michigan

Age:
16

Gym:
Twistars
Dimondale, Michigan

Qualifying Meet:
Twistars Invitational

            Bio

Q: Do you have a nickname?
A: Key

Q: When and why did you first become interested in gymnastics?
A: My mother put me in gymnastics because I had too much energy.

Q: Do you have any good/funny memories from when you first started taking gymnastics classes?
A: When I was learning my kip, my coach put a sandwich in front of the bar to make me lean forward.

Q: What about competition appeals to you?
A: I like the adrenaline of competition.

Q: What is your training regimen?
A: I train 23 hours per week during the school year and 25 hours per week in the summer.

Q: What is your favorite event?
A: Floor

Q: What is your favorite skill?
A: Double Layout

Q: What music do you use for your floor routine?
A: This year I have a mix of Prince, Marvin Gaye, Tammi Terrell, Drake and Beyoncé that I made myself.

Q: Who is your favorite gymnast or who is your “idol”?
A: My favorite gymnast is Dominique Dawes. She inspired me when I was younger. My idol is Michelle Obama.

Q: How has gymnastics helped you as a person?
A: Gymnastics helps me with time management and public speaking.

Q: What are your biggest accomplishments or best memories in your career?
A: My biggest accomplishments have been winning J.O. Nationals and making the Region 5 All-star team.

Q: What grade are you in school, and where do you go to school?
A: I am in the 10th grade at Detroit County Day School.

Q: Do you want to compete in collegiate gymnastics?
A: Yes

Q: What are your favorite subjects, etc.?
A: My favorite subjects are English and Spanish.

Q: What are your goals for the future, both as an athlete and after you are finished competing?
A: My gymnastics goals in the future are to help my team win a National Championship. Individually I would like become an All American. After gymnastics, I want to spend a year in the Peace Corps.

Q: What is your favorite food?
A: Sushi!!

Q: What is your favorite movie?
A: Remember the Titans

Q: What is your favorite book?
A: Wonder by RJ Palacio

Q: What is your favorite music group?
A: Destiny’s Child

Q: Are any of your family members current or former athletes?
A: Which sports? My brother Khalil Rivers is a Junior Running Back at Oberlin College (Go Yeo!!) and My cousin Kayli Johnson is a Freshman Shot putter at Michigan State ( Sparty On!! ).

Q: Do you have any competition rituals? Lucky charms?
A: I always put on headphones and listen to music while I am getting ready for competition.

Q: What’s on your IPod right now? What type of music do enjoy listening to? How about before a meet when you’re trying to get focused and pumped up?
A: I listen to all types of music to get me pumped. On my IPod right now ASAP Rocky, Drake, Future

Q: If you had to pick 3 words to describe yourself as a gymnast, what are they?
A: Powerful, Upbeat, Graceful

2014

Kai Rivers

Hometown:
Franklin, Michigan

Age:
13

Gym:
Twistars
Dimondale, Michigan

Qualifying Meet:
WOGA Classic

            Bio

Q: When and why did you first become interested in gymnastics?
“My mom actually put me in the sport after trying several others.”

Q: Do you have any good/funny memories from when you first started taking gymnastics classes?
“The first time I did my kip on bars, my coach was so surprised that I made it (that) she choked on the sandwich she was eating.”

Q: When did you decide you wanted to compete? What about competition appeals to you?
“I didn’t really decide to compete; I was put in my first competition by a coach. . . . I really love competing Level 10. I love the feeling you get right before you’re up for your turn – the butterflies and excitement you feel.”

Q: What is your training regimen? Was that a big change when you made the switch to competitive gymnastics?
“I go to practice five days a week. Four of those days I practice for four-and-a-half hours and one day for five hours. Switching to competitive wasn’t a big change for me. Honestly, I don’t remember gymnastics before competitive.”

Q: What is your favorite event?
“Vault.”

Q: What is your favorite skill?
“Shaposh.”

Q: What music do you use for your floor routine?
“My music is an upbeat classical song.”

Q: Who is your favorite gymnast or who is your “idol”?
“My favorite gymnast is Dominique Dawes.”

Q: How have you grown as a gymnast during your career, both skill wise and mentally?
“Without a doubt I’ve gotten much better on my skill work. Mentally I have become more mature, and mentally tougher and stronger I think. I still have a long way to go though.”

Q: How has gymnastics helped you as a person?
“Gymnastics has helped me grow as a person and helped me learn discipline.”

Q: If you had to select one life-lesson that gymnastics has taught you, what would it be?
“Gymnastics has taught me to believe in myself and how to get over my fears.”

Q: What are your biggest accomplishments or best memories in your career?
“My biggest accomplishment was winning Level 9 state and winning the WOGA Classic.”

Q: Do you want to compete in collegiate gymnastics?
“Without a doubt!”

Q: What are your favorite subjects in school?
“World religions and English.”

Q: If you plan to go to college, do you know what you want to study there?
“I would like to either study to become a veterinarian or physical therapy.”

Q: What are your goals for the future, both as an athlete and after you are finished competing?
“I would like to qualify and medal at nationals.”

Q: When you’re not in the gym, how do you enjoy spending your time? Do you have any hobbies or favorite activities?
“I love to swim and hang out with my friends. I also enjoy doing anything that involves animals.”

Q: What is your favorite food?
“I like sushi or anything Middle Eastern.”

Q: What is your favorite movie?
“My favorites are ‘Remember the Titans,’ ‘Titanic,’ and ‘Elf.'”

Q: What is your favorite book?
“My favorite books are two series: the ‘Twilight’ Saga and ‘Bad Girls Don’t Die.'”

Q: Who is your favorite musician?
“I like Beyoncé, Drake, and Christina Aguilera.”

Q: Are any of your family members current or former athletes? Which sports?
“Yes, my brother will be a running back for Oberlin College starting in the fall. My mom is a former gymnast and ran track, and my dad was basketball player in college.”

Q: Do you have any competition rituals? Lucky charms?
“I always talk to my best friend before every meet. I also have some lucky songs I like to listen to, and I always make time to pray.”

Q: What’s on your iPod right now? What type of music do enjoy listening to? How about before a meet when you’re trying to get focused and pumped up?
“I listen to pop and rap music to get pumped up.”

Q: If you had to pick three words to describe yourself as a gymnast, what are they?
“Powerful, graceful and exciting.”

Q: What three words describe you as a person, not the gymnast?
“Funny, easy going, and supportive.”